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Val. Why then, a ladder, quaintly made of cords, To cast up with a pair of anchoring hooks, Would serve to scale another Hero's tower, So bold Leander would adventure it.
Duke. Now, as thou art a gentleman of blood, Advise me where I may have such a ladder.
Val. When would you use it? pray, sir, tell me that.
Duke. This very night; for love is like a child, That longs for every thing that he can come by.
Val. By seven o'clock I'll get you such a ladder.
Duke. But, hark thee; I will go to her alone; How shall I best convey the ladder thither?
Val. It will be light, my lord, that you may bear it Under a cloak, that is of any length.
Duke. A cloak as long as thine will serve the turn? Val. Ay, my good lord.
Duke. Then let me see thy cloak; I'll get me one of such another length.
Val. Why, any cloak will serve the turn, my lord.
Duke. How shall I fashion me to wear a cloak ?I pray thee, let me feel thy cloak upon me.What letter is this same? What's here? To Silvia ? And here an engine fit for my proceeding ! l'll be so bold to break the seal for once. [Reads. My thoughts do harbour with my Silvia nightly;
And slaves they are to me, that send them flying : 0, could their master come and go as lightly,
Himself would lodge, where senseless they are lying. My herald thoughts in thy pure bosom rest them;
While I, their king, that thither them impórtune, Do curse the
grace that with such grace hath bless'd them, Because myself do want my servants' fortune :
I curse myself, for they are sent by me,
There is no music in the nightingale;
Enter PROTEUS and LAUNCE.
Laun. Him we go to find : there's not a hair ons head, but 'tis a Valentine.
Val. My ears are stopp’d, and cannot bear good news, So much of bad already hath possessed them.
Pro. Then in dumb silence will I bury mine, For they are harsh, untuneable, and bad.
Val. Is Silvia dead?
Val. No Valentine, indeed, for sacred Silvia ! -
Pro. No, Valentine.
Val. No Valentine, if Silvia hath forsworn me!What is Laun. Sir, there's a proclamation that you are va
nish'd. Pro. That thou art banished, O, that's the news; From hence, from Silvia, and from me thy friend.
Val. O, I have fed upon this woe already, And now excess of it will make me surfeit. Doth Silvia know that I am banished ?
Pro. Ay, ay; and she hath offered to the doom, (Which, unrevers'd, stands in effectual force,) A sea of melting pearl, which some call tears : Those at her father's churlish feet she tender'd; With them, upon her knees, her humble self; Wringing her hands, whose whiteness so became them, As if but now they waxed pale for woe: But neither bended knees, pure hands held up, Sad sighs, deep groans, nor silver-shedding tears, Could penetrate her uncompassionate sire; But Valentine, if he be ta’en, must die. Besides, her intercession chat'd him so, When she for thy repeal was suppliant, That to close prison he cominanded her, With many bitter threats of 'biding there.
Val. No more; unless the next word, that thou speak'st, Have some malignant power upon my life: If so, I pray thee, breathe it in mine ear,
As ending anthem of my endless dolour.
Pro. Cease to lament for that thou canst not help, And study help for that which thou lament'st. Time is the nurse and breeder of all good. Here if thou stay, thou canst not see thy love; Besides, thy staying will abridge thy life. Hope is a lover's staff; walk hence with that, And manage it against despairing thoughts. Thy letters may be here, though thou art hence; Which, being writ to me, shall be deliver’d Even in the milk-white bosom of thy love. The time now serves not to expostulate: Come, I'll convey thee through the city gate; And, ere I part with thee, confer at large Of all, that may concern thy love-affairs : As thou lov'st Silvia, though not for thyself, Regard thy danger, and along with me.
l'al. I pray thee, Launce, an if thou seest my boy, Bid him make haste, and meet me at the north-gate.
Pro. Go, sirrah, find him out. —Come, Valentine.
[Exeunt VALENTINE and Proteus. Laun. I am but a fool, look you ; and yet I have the wit to think, my inaster is a kind of knave: but that's all one, if he be but one knave. He lives not now, that knows me to be in love: yet I am in love; but a team of horse shall not pluck that from me; nor who ’tis I love, and yet ’tis a woman : but that woman,
I will not tell myself; and yet ’tis a milk-maid: yet ’tis not a maid, for she hath had gossips : yet ’tis a maid, for she is her master's maid, and serves for wages. She hath more qualities than a water-spaniel,—which is